Interactively Solving School Timetabling Problems Using Extensions of Constraint Programming

  • Hadrien Cambazard
  • Fabien Demazeau
  • Narendra Jussien
  • Philippe David
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 3616)


Timetabling problems have been frequently studied due to their wide range of applications. However, they are often solved manually because of the lack of appropriate computer tools. Although many approaches mainly based on local search or constraint programming seem to have been quite successful in recent years, they are often dedicated to specific problems and encounter difficulties in dealing with the dynamic and over-constrained nature of such problems.

We were confronted with such an over-constrained and dynamic problem in our institution. This paper deals with a timetabling system based on constraint programming with the use of explanations to offer a dynamic behaviour and to allow automatic relaxations of constraints. Our tool has successfully answered the needs of the current planner by providing solutions in a few minutes instead of a week of manual design. We present in this paper the techniques used, the results obtained and a discussion on the effects of the automation of the timetabling process.


Local Search Constraint Programming Constraint Satisfaction Problem Soft Constraint Hard Constraint 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hadrien Cambazard
    • 1
  • Fabien Demazeau
    • 2
  • Narendra Jussien
    • 1
  • Philippe David
    • 1
  1. 1.École des Mines de Nantes, LINA CNRSNantes Cedex 3France
  2. 2.ISoft, Chemin de MoulonGif sur YvetteFrance

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